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How can I tell if I have food poisoning?

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Despite the wide range of types, most cases of food poisoning cause some mix of the following:

If you have a mild case, you might think you have a stomach flu or virus. You may get better without any treatment, but some people have such bad symptoms that they may need to go to the hospital.

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Food Poisoning.”

UCLA Health: “Food Poisoning.”

FoodSafety.gov: “Symptoms of Food Poisoning.”

Kliegman, R.  19th Edition, Saunders, 2011. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics,

National Digestive Disease Information Clearinghouse: "Diarrhea."

Feldman, M.  , 9th Edition, Saunders, 2010. Sleisenger and Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease

FamilyDoctor.org: “Food Poisoning,” "Fever in Infants and Children: Treatment."

Reviewed by Christine Mikstas on April 3, 2019

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: “Food Poisoning.”

UCLA Health: “Food Poisoning.”

FoodSafety.gov: “Symptoms of Food Poisoning.”

Kliegman, R.  19th Edition, Saunders, 2011. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics,

National Digestive Disease Information Clearinghouse: "Diarrhea."

Feldman, M.  , 9th Edition, Saunders, 2010. Sleisenger and Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease

FamilyDoctor.org: “Food Poisoning,” "Fever in Infants and Children: Treatment."

Reviewed by Christine Mikstas on April 3, 2019

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What are some signs I have food poisoning?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.